The Impact of Air Quality on Mental Health

Authors: Uma Baysal*, University of Denver
Topics: Social Geography, Urban Geography, Health and Medical
Keywords: Air quality, mental health, well-being
Session Type: Virtual Poster
Day: 4/10/2021
Start / End Time: 1:30 PM / 2:45 PM
Room: Virtual 51
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


We created a website in the spirit of developing actionable urban planning policy that is community engaged and focused on helping communities and cities chart a path to a just and sustainable future. The site is part of a Human and Ecological Wellbeing (HEW) website that supports a larger ‘Beyond GDP’ initiative at the University of Denver. The Beyond GDP initiative is aimed at identifying key Human and Ecological Well-being indicators. The mission of the project is to promote “greater awareness and impact of human and ecological wellbeing measures in the personal and public consciousness and decision-making among Coloradans”, by developing “a comprehensive overview and an outlook of conditions and trends that affect the health and quality of life for our communities, and the flourishing of our environment that sustains all life”. This poster presents a specific prototype utilizing the work of Prof. Erika Manczak (DU Clinical Psychology) that relates mental health (e.g. depression) with air quality. The public facing web site allows anyone to assess the air quality in their local community and learn how air quality can impact their mental health. We believe this sort of work will grow in importance because it highlights important research taking place at the University of Denver, disseminates and demonstrates web-mapping capacity of the Geography Department, and provides a working example of a vehicle for hosting indicator dashboards.

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